Nut and Seed Milks


Whole-Grain, Nut, and Seed “Milks” as an Alternative to Dairy

Silica is a trace mineral that helps maintain the health of bones, cartilage, tendons, blood vessels, skin, and hair. Silica is also thought to arrest the signs of aging, since it promotes tissue strength, elasticity, and firmness. It is even believed to penetrate tissues to expel stored toxins.1 Recent research also suggests that excessive intake of calcium, without adequate silica, can actually cause osteoporosis.2

Silica is present in the soil and is the most abundant mineral in the earth’s crust. It is found in the outside covering of whole grains such as wheat, oats, barley, millet, and rice. It is also present in beets, alfalfa, onions, dark, leafy green vegetables, cucumbers, avocados, and the herbs horsetail, comfrey, and nettles.

“Milks” made from whole grains, nuts, and seeds can be used as alternatives to dairy. They also provide good sources of silica and other co-factor nutrients to help build strong bones, teeth, hair, skin, blood vessels, and connective tissues.

The recipes that follow are simple and easy to do. You can find other recipes for making milks, but I choose these because they involve few ingredients and no special materials or equipment.

Oat Milk
3 cups boiling, filtered water
1 cup rolled oats
2 T. sweet white or barley miso

Dissolve miso in a bit of the boiling water. Then, add all ingredients to a jar, stir, and cover with a lid. Refrigerate overnight or for about 12 hours. Then, blend until smooth in a blender or food processor. Always shake before using. Keeps about a week.

Variations: For creamier texture, first grind oats in a blender or coffee grinder before proceeding. For a richer milk, add tahini or almond butter, to taste. For sweeter milk, add a few dates or other dried fruit, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, etc.
Source: Modified from Delicious Wisdom.com

Barley Milk
1 cup cooked barley
1 cup boiling water
8 cups water
Salt to taste

Place barley in a blender. Add boiling water and pulse, then blend for 1 minute. Add 8 cups of water and salt. Blend. Serve.

As an added source of silica in your cooking, this can be used in place of liquid in many soups.
Variations: Blend ¼ cup walnuts, ¼ cup raisins or prunes, 2T. rice syrup, and a bit of barley malt.
Source: Jackson Blackman

Rice Milk
2cups short grain brown rice
4 cups filtered water
• Rinse rice in water, swishing and pouring off til water runs clear. Strain completely.
• Bring 4 cups water to a boil and soak the rice for two hours, covered on the counter top.
• Remove 1 cup of soaked rice from the water and add it to a blender with 2 ½ cups of cold water. Blend the rice until it is coarsely ground and mixed, not perfectly smooth. Pour the blended rice mixture into a pot and repeat the process until all the rice is used up.
• Bring the rice mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat to low and simmer it covered, for 20 minutes.
• Line a sieve with two layers of cheesecloth and place the sieve over a large bowl. Pour the rice mixture into the sieve, allowing the milk to drain into the bowl. Gather the cheesecloth and squeeze it to drain as much liquid as possible into the bowl.
Store in refrigerator. Keeps for about a week.
Source: Ellen Arian


Almond Milk

1 cup almonds
Water, Divided: 1 cup, 1 cup, 6 cups
1 cup cooked brown rice
Salt to taste
1 T. barley malt
Vanilla extract, to taste (~1 T.)

Place almonds in a blender and blend to a powder. Add 1 cup water and blend for a minute. Add cooked rice and blend one minute. Add 1 cup water and blend a minute. Add salt and remaining 6 cups of water, barley malt, and vanilla. Blend, adjust seasonings and serve.
Source: Jackson Blackman

Easy Sesame Seed Milk
1 cup sesame seeds
Water
2-3 pitted dates

Soak sesame seeds in water to cover. Place in a blender or food processor with water and dates. Blend. Strain. Sesame seeds are high in calcium.
Source: Tonya Zavasta

Copyright 2009, Pathways4Heath.org

  1. Elson Haas, Staying Healthy With Nutrition,185 []
  2. Too Much Calcium Leads to Osteoporosis? Well-Being Journal, Nov/Dec, 2009 []